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Photography Patrick Demarcheliercourtesy of NARS

François Nars tells all about the decadent new NARS Studio 54 collection


TextAlex Peters

This festive season party like it’s 1977

During its late-70s heyday, Studio 54 paid witness to some of the biggest names, most beautiful faces and chicest freaks of the time. It was an era of disco decadence when glamour was at its most extreme and make-up adhered to a firm “more is more” policy, whether that was Debbie Harry’s icy blue eyeshadow or Grace Jones’s bold red lips and fuschia blush. 

Calling back to this glittering era is NARS which has dropped a new limited edition Holiday Collection inspired by Studio 54 and the nightclub’s sparkling scene. Comprising of lipsticks, eye and cheek palettes, mascara and brushes, the collection pays homage to creator François Nars’s love of nightclubs and the beautiful women who populate them.  

“I loved going to all the discos with Marc (Jacobs) in the 80s/90s – Studio 54, Danceteria, etc.,” he tells us. “I loved going to them so much I named each shade of the NARS Glitter Pencils after a club.” The lipsticks, meanwhile he says, have been named in honour of icons of the era, think Bianca Jagger and Jerry Hall, Carmen D’Alessio and Debbie Harry.

“The Supermodels of the 80s had such a distinct look and presence. They are strong beautiful women who knew how to grow and transform themselves into icons,” he says. “The models of today are still beautiful, but they are transient and do not have the same staying power.”

This rich period of history has proven to be a fruitful source of inspiration for Nars, who often turns to the bright colours and electric excitement of the period for inspiration. In 2012, for example, the brand paid tribute to Andy Warhol with its Pop Art-influenced collection featuring Factory superstars like Edie Sedgwick, Candy Darling, and, of course, Warhol himself. For Nars, however, creative stimulus is all around us and can be found everywhere. “Everything inspires me. I am inspired by beauty. It could be from nature, from music, fashion, books or movies. I love old Hollywood and old European films from the start of the film industry up through the 80s,” he says.

“There has been an incredible evolution of make-up. Women are learning and experimenting more. Magazines, professional artists, and of course the freedom of fashion are helping women to make fewer mistakes. I think NARS especially has pushed women to have fun while still keeping their look sophisticated.”

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